The April 22 Grand Square

On April 22, there will be an astrological grand square in the skies at 13 degrees. The planets involved are Mars (in Libra), Jupiter (in Cancer), Uranus (in Aries) and Pluto (in Capricorn).

The signs are the cardinal signs of the four elements. Cardinal is one of the three modes – the other two are fixed and mutable. Four elements times three modes equal the twelve signs of the zodiac.

When planets are in the same mode (cardinal, fixed, mutable) they are in 90 degree aspect called a square. The square is representative of friction. The cardinal signs have much in common – all initiate and are self-motivated – and much different – they are all different elements:

  1. Libra – air
  2. Cancer – water
  3. Aries – fire
  4. Capricorn – earth

While squares are seen as a difficult aspect, it is also acknowledged that without some sort of friction in the personality, the personality is reluctant to act or grow. Think of that super-talented person you know who is content to watch television all day. They could win American Idol, have pictures hang in the National Gallery, could write a novel in ten days or could wipe Fred Astaire from the annals of dancing history.

But they don’t do anything.

That is a person without squares or oppositions.


In 2008, Pluto entered the sign of Capricorn (does that year ring a bell for any reason?). In 2011, Uranus entered Aries and began and on-again, off-again square with Pluto.

Pluto and Uranus move slowly so they will do the “square dance” for several years, sometimes moving close, sometimes moving far away (to swing with another planet).

The inner planets (moon, Mercury, Venus, Mars) move more quickly and sometimes join the dance.

Jupiter and Saturn move more slowly than the inner planets but more quickly than the outer. When they join the Pluto-Uranus square dance, they stay for a year (Jupiter) or two (Saturn).

Jupiter is currently involved in the square dance and is also involved in another aspect called a Grand Trine. This occurs when planets occupy the three signs of an element. In this case, Jupiter in Cancer is making a trine (or triangle) with Saturn in Scorpio and Neptune in Pisces.

Jupiter is key here, being one point of a square and one point of a trine. It actually makes a nice astrological kite pattern.

This SkyScript site shows the aspects well.

The trine, unlike the square, is considered an aspect beneficial and comforting. When you meet folks like yourself, you naturally fall into conversation and friendship. They know what it means to work in the same industry, share the same religion, shop at the same grocery store and speak the same language.

Jupiter is expansive and interested in teaching through gain, not pain (unlike Saturn). This is a diet where you can still eat some pudding. Jupiter wants to help by opening its door to you, not by closing you out.

Geometry and Personality

Because squares are viewed as friction, astrologers are making some dire warnings about the April 22 timeframe. Intense energy will do that – create extremes of negative and positive manifestation.

Imagine standing on the beach looking at the ocean and seeing a huge wave approaching. Some of us (like me) run to the hotel restaurant for tea and a nice view and others grab the nearest surfboard for the ride of their lives.

What will you do mid April?

While astrological squares have negative connotations, I keep thinking about the stability of a geometric square. In astrology, we say “square” even when the square is not fully formed. On April 22, the square will be fully formed.

Here’s a personality test based on geometric shapes.

The square, you will note, suggests a person of hard work, perseverance and diligence. “Squares” are methodical and patient, the site says.

The circle is a symbol of harmony. Your entire horoscope, and everyone else’s, is a circle. If we stay within ourselves, harmony prevails.

Triangles symbolize leadership and confidence. An astrological trine is quite confident in its element, having no idea why others struggle. Trines assume everyone knows what it’s like to feel, to think, to plan or to become excited about life.

Zigzags are creative. I’d say in your chart if you were to map all the aspects at once, you’d see a combination of squares, triangles and lots of zigzags. Those are the pieces of personality that dangle from the bottom of your sweater threatening the sweater in search of freedom from the weave.

Zigzags are all over the place. Most of your clothing has a zigzag in it.

Rectangles, according to the site, are the least happy, most confused. So a square off balance is what creates the confusion.

The Grand Square

What can we expect, then, around April 22?

I expect the square to re-balance what is imbalanced in the cardinal energy.

In English (or Google translation), if we choose, we can rebalance our relationship to self, others and planet. That covers family relationships, marriage relationships, and the structures we’ve created to manage how to live together.

When Pluto entered Capricorn in 2008, the housing market collapsed in many countries. Banking would have fallen with it had not governments intervened.

Pluto has not left Capricorn. The levee (government) is still there. We have time to balance the situation before Pluto leaves Capricorn in a decade and the levee goes with it.

While this may sound abstract, keep in mind that the world deliberately, though not always maliciously, keeps you in imbalance.

How much marketing do you see daily? All of it says you need something, that you are not balanced and whole, that you are not perfect the way you are.

If friction is not created, action does not occur. All marketing is friction, impetus to affect your behavior through personality and identity (Aries).

Because the world motivates through friction, it is also possible that when balance is near, friction is deliberately created.

Like other astrologers, I do fret a bit about possibilities during this time frame. Yet, what may occur around April 22 is occurring now, just not on the grand scale that will occur around that time.

What to do?

If the circle is harmony, staying centered will help us in the face of the square. The circle is our self, our entire horoscope.

Can we resist deliberate friction? Can we watch a stock market fall and not panic? Can we be told we’re ugly and not run to the makeup store? Can we be told there is a robber in the neighborhood and still manage to sleep peacefully?

It’s tough.

This reminds me of a scene in the The Way of the Peaceful Warrior where the protagonist finds himself standing on the image of a pentacle as images of past, present, future, good and bad lure him to move in response. The message he receives is this:

Stay where you are. The pentacle is the present moment. There, you’re safe. The demon and his attendants are the past. The door is the future. Beware.

Staying present doesn’t negate action; it negates reaction.


About ohioastrology

I'm just another soul trying to make sense of the world. As I've grown, so has my understanding of astrology. I'd like to communicate that astrology is not occult and not fortune-telling but that it is a fluid, creative description of the life we choose to live.
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2 Responses to The April 22 Grand Square

  1. Pingback: April 12: Peace, Love and a Shot of Whisky | Ohio Astrology

  2. Pingback: Happy Taurus, I Mean Easter | Ohio Astrology

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